Internet access has been restored in Uganda after 4 days of total internet shutdown. In an unprecedented move, the government through the Uganda Communication Commission (UCC) announced the order hours before election day. The move has been criticized by many as a massive violation of the rights: access to information and freedom of expression.
Uganda’s long time leader Yeweri Museveni (76) has defended the blocking as retaliation against USA tech giants Facebook after they deleted all accounts belonging to pro-regime personal. Facebook is believed to have deleted the accounts because the affected individuals were manipulating people in favour of Museveni. Weeks before the closure, the government had asked Facebook and youtube to take down anti-Museveni material but they did not react.
Museveni was reelected into the office for a sixth term during the blackout. Runner up Robert Kygulanyi has said the move was aimed at stopping his party (NUP) from publishing election rigging evidence and silence journalists following the election.
Five days later the internet connection has been restored but access to social media platforms such as Youtube Facebook Twitter and WhatsApp is still blocked as the president accuses then of bias. Ugandans have resorted to using virtual private networks (VPN) to access such platforms.